NECK DEUS INTERSIT. – The American war is now virtually over, and we can only ask why it was not put a stop to sooner. The Senate has stepped in at last, and effectually finished the business by a simple enactment. All the Confederates were to lay down their arms in sixty days, and all who did not were to be hanged as rebels. The Federal government has but to carry out this law, and there is an end of the struggle. How very odd that nobody thought of it earlier! However, never too late to mend the Union, even with a rope.
He that fights and recedes for a strategic reason,
May live to fight another season.
P.S. Yes, Sir.

What hez England done to rile us
That we air so mad with you?
Don’t you want to reconcile us?
You’ve done all you dare to du.
Jist to resky from starvation
Them there weavers out o’ feed,
You would try on mediation,
Ef you thought it would succeed.
Them Confederates in rebellin’
You’d encouridge if you durst,
Hearts with pent-up malice swellin’
In your buzzums, fit to burst.
We hev given you cause to hate us,
Ruinin’ your cotton trade,
You must cuss and execrate us,
Tu attack us though afraid.
We hev scorned you, snubbed you, done you,
Hindered you and helped your foes,
Put the wust affronts opon you,
All but pulled you by the nose,
To embrile you in a quarrel,
Given you next to actual kicks,
Served you with a wuss than Morrill
Tariff in your present fix.
Wal, in course it stands to reason,
Which the feelins carn’t supress,
You must side with Southern treason.
If but wishin it success;
Writin’ like a alligator.
Trod on by a giant’s heel.
It is only human natur’
Like that air for you to feel.
‘Tis because you can’t but cherish
Spite again us in your breast,
And must pray that we may perish,
That we loathe and you detest.
‘Tis our inborn disposition
Them we injures to abhor,
To rejoice in their perdition,
By a famine, plague, or war.
Guess we’ve one great consolation;
On our war your famine hangs,
So we raves with exultation
When on hunger’s bitter pangs,
Your unhappy paupers bitin’
Our luxurious fancy gloats,
Whilst we still goes on a fightin’
Cuttin’ one another’s throats.

Title:Yankeedom to England


Publication:The Bolton Chronicle

Published in:Bolton

Date:2nd August 1862

Keywords:famine, politics, war


This poem taken from Punch contains several interesting elements, not least in its introductory assertion that the American war is ‘now virtually over’ (it was to continue for almost another three years). It begins with the cod-Latin phrase ‘NECK DEUS INTERSIT’, referring to an adage which translates as ‘God does not intervene’. The poem has bitter tone, and is spoken in the voice of a taunting American, with a typically Punchian ironically bad attempt to depict the accent. The piece accuses the English of being afraid to intervene on behalf of the Confederacy, despite the snubs of the Union, and reflects the tensions following the Trent Affair. The last stanza refers directly to the Cotton Famine and has the American voice mocking British workers’ misfortune. – SR